Hydraulic engineering for inland waterways

From wet dredging to strengthening canal beds

Hydraulic engineering work is of great international importance to the family-run business Felbermayr. Our rapidly expanding division has now grown to encompass around 140 items of floating equipment. This includes push-boats, hopper barges, stilt-mounted pontoons as well as long-shaft dredgers and motorboats, which can be used to perform work throughout virtually the entirety of Europe's inland waterway system.

Our services in this area range from classic wet dredging to pile driving and sinking operations, and from planned dredging and revetment installation to canal bed strengthening work. We can also undertake general equipment transportation and maintenance work to keep shipping channels open, for example. Hiring out floating equipment is yet another service that forms part of this vastly expanding field. Felbermayr customers can also benefit from the multitude of synergies with other divisions at Felbermayr, such as the construction department and the business unit of transport and lifting technology.

For renaturation and waterway maintenance

Removing material from still and/or flowing bodies of water is one of the most common disciplines in hydraulic engineering. This type of work in the groundwater sector requires preliminary analysis and approval by qualified experts.  

Specialist expertise and use of the right equipment, not to mention observance of environmental law and other statutory regulations, are a top priority when carrying out such operations. The accumulated material can be added to the bed load or, if suitable, recycled and used as a mineral material in structural or civil engineering applications. 

Custom-made solutions for water

If "Kachlets" (narrow water gaps on the Danube) threaten to compromise the safety of shipping operations or stand in the way of a planned construction project, we have the perfect equipment for tackling the required building work. The multitude of hydraulic chisels we have available allows us to make short work of any underwater rock formations in our path. 

The combination of knowledgeable employees and equipment that has been optimised for underwater use enables us to take down reinforced concrete structures equally as efficiently – while taking the surrounding environment into account the entire time. Where required, we can also undertake underwater blasting work and take away rubble for recycling. 

Bioengineering measures

One of the main tasks when constructing revetments and breakwaters is to protect the river bank or shoreline against erosion. Revetments can consist of a simple stone wall or lines of wooden planks. It may even be necessary to construct concrete revetments in areas where the risk of erosion is particularly high. 

Breakwaters serve to change the cross-section of a river and are built extending from the bank into middle. This increases the speed of the current flowing down the centre of the river, which in turn intensifies the erosion of sediment in order to deepen the fairway channel. The water around the edges of the river, by contrast, slows down and becomes calmer. This creates areas in which the water does not move at all, which are often set up to renaturate stretches of water as well prevent erosion. 

Quick and efficient help in the event of accidents at sea

Natural forces, low water levels and technical malfunctions can all make it necessary to carry out salvage and lightering work. The Felbermayr Hydraulic Engineering department owns a wide variety of floating machinery to respond to such situations, including stilt-mounted pontoons, long-armed excavators and motor boats. Other lifting equipment such as work platforms and cranes can also be deployed promptly on the water for lightering and salvage purposes. 

In, on, through and under the water

In addition to undertaking general activities in the field of hydraulic engineering, Felbermayr has also proved itself a strong partner in hydraulic steel engineering for the construction industry. This expertise has enabled the Felbermayr Hydraulic Engineering department to carry out work such as pile driving and transporting items of machinery across bodies of water in a time- and cost-efficient way. We are able to do this thanks to having easily dismantled pontoons, for example, which can also be transported on the road. 

In addition to their superb technical skills, staff at Felbermayr Hydraulic Engineering also boast in-depth knowledge of construction engineering. This means that they fully understand our customers' demands and can meet them in the optimum way. 

Cutter suction dredgers as custom machines

With a working depth of up to 20 metres, our cutter suction dredgers can be used in practically all areas of application on Europe's waterways. They also have a modular structure, which means that they can be taken apart, transported on the road, and even used without difficulty on lakes and small bodies of water. 

Cutter suction dredgers are primarily used to remove sludge, sand or gravel from the water bed. The material is picked up by a suction head and then transported away using a jet system. As an alternative to a suction head, a cutting wheel or a cutting head can also be used to tackle harder rock formations.